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How to Prioritize Self-Care as a Yearbook Adviser: Summer Break and Beyond


A small chalkboard sign with the words "self care o'clock"

As summer approaches and the ‘23-24 school year comes to an end, take time to care for yourself! As a yearbook adviser, the next school year will promise to be a grueling, and sometimes chaotic, adventure. The opportunity to lead students and create a historical document for your school is a beautiful privilege and challenge. You need to prioritize self-care to ward off burnout! The summer months offer the space and time to relax, refocus, and prepare for the school year. Here are some tips to help you prioritize self-care this summer and into the school year.


SUMMERTIME RESET


Summer is the perfect time to decompress and rest after a long school year. Reflect on the things that bring rest to your soul: a good book, a new movie, a delicious meal, cooking or baking, hiking, swimming, or camping. Many options are available. A change of scenery can do wonders for your mental and physical well-being. It can be a day trip to a park, a few days out of town, eating at a new restaurant, or adventuring to an area of town you haven't visited before. Don’t hesitate to make your vacation time a priority. As an adviser, you may still want to prioritize next year’s yearbook. As important as it is to get ahead, it is even more important to take care of yourself. You will only be able to be present for your students if you have taken care of yourself. You’ve done so much this year, you deserve this!


GET ENOUGH REST


Throughout the summer and into the school year, keep in mind that we are holistic beings, meaning the physical, mental, and emotional aspects of our bodies all affect one another. If you take care of one part but do not pay attention to the others, it can be detrimental. Key burnout prevention begins with proper sleep and rest. Catch up on needed rest by crafting a schedule to focus on health this summer. Your job in the classroom can take so much from your emotional, psychological, and physical state.  Choose to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night, and take breaks throughout the day! If not, you will push yourself until your body shuts down.

The word "rest" is drawn in the sand at the beach

EXERCISE


One primary avenue to alleviate stress and prevent burnout is exercise. Exercise revitalizes the body, energizes the mind, and fires up your physical responses. Create a simple and consistent plan or schedule for exercise this summer, and mix up the locations from inside to outside. Try jogging, fast walking, yoga, bicycling, swimming, tennis, pickleball...there are so many options. If you haven't joined the YMCA, a community rec center, or a local gym consider these months the time to start. You know your body, and you know the best ways to get yourself moving. Find something you enjoy doing and make a routine out of it! 



TAKE CARE OF YOUR MIND


Just as exercise is necessary for the body, strong mental health is necessary for the mind. Today's culture embraces the value of mental health and emotional balance. Many helpful resources are available. Take a mental check of the activities that make you happy and bring joy. What hobbies can you pursue? Carve time to be in nature, read, meditate, and retreat. Draw, paint, cook, sew, craft, sing in a choir, read, join a book club, watch movies, and listen to podcasts, and music. All these fun activities can add depth and breadth to your yearbook. In the school year, interact with the students and share your experiences and struggles with mental health. Keep your momentum going and bring your students with you.


This picture showcases a nature trail with many trees

KEEP A HEALTHY WORK/LIFE BALANCE


Even with the best intentions, you may find the workload creeping more and more into your personal time. You may be pulled in so many different directions. Don’t stretch yourself too thin! Facilitate a classroom where students take responsibility. When you give your students leadership opportunities, this will not only teach them lifelong lessons, but it will take some of the stress away from you. Understand how much energy you’re able to exert, and don’t push yourself past those limits. You owe it to yourself to take the rest you need. Express gratitude frequently for your students’ diligent, hard work. Acknowledge the accomplishments of small tasks that often get overlooked. Every little victory adds up to the final goal. Whenever you or your class gets too tied up and busy, stop and speak to that. Some days do get busier than others causing more stress in personal lives. Talk about this with your students and determine where you can move a deadline back, if necessary. We are usually hardest on ourselves, so breathe deeply and give yourself a positive "pep-talk" to lighten up. 


START A ROUTINE


In the coming school year, after you have rested and are renewed in mind, body, and soul, keep the routine. Routine brings peace, less clutter, and less stress. Making time for simple things like having time for silence, collaboration, and even brainstorming will keep you on a set schedule. Keep the line drawn between work and rest, and help your students recognize the same thing.  Help them recognize the signs of imbalance, and guide them to resolution. Take time to have mini celebrations. Your work week will be more productive.


We hope that you enjoy your summer vacation and take the time to focus on yourself. Self-care doesn’t stop when summer ends, take it with you into the next school year and on. You deserve to show up for yourself as much as you show up for your students!


United Yearbook offers blogs on a wide range of topics. In addition, there are resources such as curriculum, and year-round workshops on this and other areas. Subscribe to our blog and our  newsletter, and visit our website at www.unitedyearbook.net to learn more! United Yearbook is available to assist you throughout the school year including during summer break. Visit our website at this link to schedule an online appointment.


Copyright © 2024. TSE Worldwide Press. All Rights Reserved.

 

Marketing manager at United Yearbook, Jessica Carrera

Contributor: Jessica Carrera, Associate Editor at TSE Worldwide Press and Marketing Manager at United Yearbook, holds a B.A. in English with a concentration in writing from Biola University. She aspires to touch the lives of others through her words.



Editor, Donna Ladner

Editor: Donna Ladner obtained a B.A. in Education and a minor in English from California Baptist University, and a M.S. in ESL from USC, Los Angeles. After she married Daniel, their family moved to Indonesia with a non-profit organization and lived cross-culturally for 15 years before returning to the U.S in 2012. Donna has been working as an editor and proofreader for TSE Worldwide Press and its subsidiary, United Yearbook since 2015.



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